Some employers require that engineers obtain professional registration with the state within which they work. In the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, professional registration is administered by the Board of Registration of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors. The Board works to insure that persons practicing in these professions are competent to practice and are not endangering the life, health, safety and welfare of the public.
Two kinds of mechanical engineers find a professional engineer's license particularly useful:
- Those who work for architectural/engineering firms, such as Stone and Webster Engineering, Inc., and Bechtel Corporation.
- Those who work for a unit of the government, such as the Department of Environmental Protection, that must approve plant designs.
Registration requires a certain number of years of work experience and the successful completion of two full-day written examinations. The first of these exams, the Fundamentals of Engineering Exam, covers a variety of general engineering and science topics, and it is best taken around the time one completes the SB degree (while all this knowledge is still fresh!). Information on this exam is available from the National Council of Engineering Examiners.
For further information, you may contact Professor Lienhard, who is a Registered Professional Mechanical Engineer in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.